Behavioral Research Blog

Discrimination learning without human intervention or food restriction

Posted by G. Smit on Dec 15, 2016

 

Learning paradigms have long been the hallmark in studies on neurological and psychiatric disorders, but they often present challenges and come with limitations. For example, many of these tasks require some combination of food restrictions, handling of the animals, and/or are quite labor-intensive. Sylics recently introduced a new paradigm, called CognitionWall, that you might have already seen on our website, and aims to get around some of these limitations.

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Topics: EthoVision XT, mice, Video tracking, learning and memory, PhenoTyper, cognition, cognitionwall, sylics

Video tracking for high-throughput screening of plant resistance to thrips

Posted by Olga Krips on Sep 26, 2016

Unless you grow plants commercially, you may very well not know what a thrips is. It is a tiny insect that can have a not-so-tiny effect on plants. Thrips pierce plant leaves and flowers and suck out their contents. And, not less important, many plant viruses are known to be transmitted by thrips [1]. Needless to say, a lot of research is currently carried out on how to get rid of these creatures.

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Topics: EthoVision XT, Video tracking, insect behavior, Tracking insects

High-throughput screening of plant lines for resistance to pest insects

Posted by Olga Krips on Sep 16, 2016

One of the great things about working for Noldus IT is its involvement in scientific research projects. Because the tools that we offer are used in scientific research, it is logical that we also participate in projects for which such tools are developed.

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Topics: EthoVision XT, Video tracking, insect

The power of rejection (in fruit flies)

Posted by G. Smit, MSc & A.H. Macbeth, PhD on Sep 1, 2016

In a previous post we talked about fruit flies and their amazing sense of smell. This includes the ability to navigate to a food source, as well as search out a preferred mate. However, there are other areas in which their olfactory systems come into play. This includes courting behavior (did you know the male does all the work?) and obesity. Yes - obesity can be studied in fruit flies.

Image courtesy of Hans Smid, www.bugsinthepicture.com 
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Topics: Video tracking, video observation, drosophila, fruit fly

The use of video tracking in a HaXha test

Posted by G. Smit on Aug 25, 2016

When you get used to something, after a while you might not notice it anymore. It’s called habituation. When you are repeatedly presented with the same stimulus you might cease to respond to it altogether.

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Topics: Video tracking

How fruit flies find your food (and mates!)

Posted by G. Smit, MSc & A.H. Macbeth, PhD on Aug 18, 2016

Those tiny flies that take over your garbage cans during the summer? They are called fruit flies (or, Drosophila, their scientific name) for a reason! They have a fantastic sense of smell, but they also have a lot more in common with us that you might think. With 75% genetic commonality with humans, particularly the genes that cause human disease, these tiny creatures are a popular animal model for researchers.

 

Image courtesy of Hans Smid, www.bugsinthepicture.com
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Topics: Video tracking, social behavior research, drosophila, fruit fly

EthoVision XT and the open field test

Posted by Guest blogger on Feb 19, 2016

We recently teamed up with a new partner, Maze Engineers, to extend our portfolio of video tracking solutions. They also have a great blog, and today we would like to share one of their recent posts with you. Find the original article here and their blog here. Thanks, Maze Engineers, for letting us share this post with our readers!

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Topics: EthoVision XT, Video tracking, open field test, elevated plus maze, Maze Engineers

Serotonin and social skills: how adult mice differ from juveniles

Posted by G. Smit, MSc & A.H. Macbeth, PhD on Jan 7, 2016

Serotonin (5-HT) is a busy neurotransmitter, influencing such varied neuronal processes as memory, mood, emotion, appetite, and even sexuality. A prime role for this neurotransmitter is social behavior, across a variety of species; humans, rodents, primates, and even flies all rely upon serotonin to display normal social behaviors. These social effects are partly mediated through the serotonin receptor 5-HT2CR. This role has been confirmed by pharmacologic treatment, but until recently this work had focused primarily on adult rodents. In this current article, Séjourné and colleagues from the Scripps Research Institute (Florida, USA) for the first time investigated the role of 5-HT2CR in the development of social behavior.

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Topics: EthoVision XT, mice, Video tracking, social behavior research, sociability test, seizure behavior

Zebrafish provide key insights into alcohol addiction

Posted by Guest blogger on Dec 11, 2015

As I mentioned a couple of weeks ago, at this year's Neuroscience I talked to someone from the Gerlai Lab at the University of Toronto (Ontario) who is involved in very interesting research on alcohol addiction. That person was Steven Tran, and I am very happy to say that he agreed to share a story on our Behavioral Research Blog. Take it away, Steven!

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Topics: EthoVision XT, Video tracking, zebrafish, anxiety research, addiction

Does pesticide resistance make malaria mosquitoes “smarter”?

Posted by Olga Krips on Nov 19, 2015

In one of my previous blog posts, I wrote about the success of insecticide treated bed nets (ITNs) in preventing malaria. In the past five years, mortality from malaria has dropped with 60%, which is at least partly due to the widespread use of ITNs [1]. However, ITNs do not offer a 100% effective solution against malaria, primarily due to the fact that not everyone in malaria-affected areas has access to ITNs. But even if they did, malaria-spreading mosquitoes may still be able to bite their victims if the bed nets have holes. In addition, mosquitoes may develop resistance against the insecticides the bed nets are treated with.

By James D. Gathany (The Public Health Image Library , ID#444) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

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Topics: EthoVision XT, Video tracking, Mosquito

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